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VectorWorks - Major File Read/Save Problem

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Dear All

 

Hello. Grateful if anyone has any insight into a problem which just manifested yesterday, after using various versions of VectorWorks without any issue for the past 10 years.

 

VectorWorks (version 2011) has suddenly begun to deny “file-save-as” commands to specified directories on the C: drive. Or also fail to open ANY previously saved files in specified directories on the C:drive (all within C:Users/Libraries/Documents/Xyz). With the message "You Do Not Have Administrator Rights to Save To This Location" (I do!) - When I try and open a previously saved (non corrupt) VW file, there is no pop-up message, it just does not open. Any of them, no matter how many different test or actual files I try.

 

VW will only save and read/open files now if saved (or moved) to the top root directory of C:/user. The license key is showing on start-up, and all functionality in VW is normal. Can open a file (from root directory) edit and save as normal. Just not to a specified target directory below C:/user

 

I have tried most of the obvious permutations of setting read/write/full-control permissions for the VW programme in properties/permissions. And also editing the registry / Local-Key to apply the same permissions for the C:drive and sub-folders. Plus running VW in Administrator mode. All to no avail. Am running Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit.

 

No windows OS or software update, addition of new programme, driver, hardware or any other substantive change has been made to the PC running VW, nor any changes or updates to VW. There is no change to roll-back or anything to uninstall.

 

The only, perhaps, salient factor is VW has not been opened and used on this PC (or any other with the same licence) for approx. 6 months. I'm out of ideas, save for a full uninstall and re-install, which is a last resort as it is such a chore getting the licence code re-authorised by the reseller. Before I go that far, does this problem ring a bell with anyone?

 

Any ideas much appreciated.

 

Many thanks

Iso

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Did you try restarting the computer? I have had this issue in the past too with some software and a restart of the computer often fixed this. Something is locking access to those folders temporarily or failed to properly unlock those folders and then a restart of the computer might force quit that blocking.

 

Instead of a full restart you could also try signing out from your user account, that has often the same effect, but sometimes it still takes a full restart (i.e. a shutdown and then start-up).

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Iso,  here are the things I would check first: do you have this problem with other file types, especially in that same folder? Are the vectorworks files in question marked "read only" when you open the properties dialog box for the file?  Create and save a new file to that same location in vectorworks – does that file have the problem? Do you possibly have an issue with an administrator name or password?

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Art V and Pete Retondo - Thank you both for your suggestions.

 

The PC has been fully shut-down and restarted many times since the problem started. I don't think it's anything simple. I have a feeling it's related to permissions, though the cause is really foxing me.

 

To answer your question Pete, every other application / programme on the computer can save and read (re-open) old and new files to/from the target directories (inc all the usual suite of MS Office apps, plus every other 3rd party programme on the PC). It's only VectorWorks that now suddenly won't, despite having worked fine for years.

 

The VW files are not marked Read-Only. Even creating a brand new test file, VW will no longer save to the target directory C:/username/libraries/documents/xyx folder. Prompting the error message "You Do Not Have Permission To Save In This Location. Contact Your Administrator". But the crazy thing is, I do have permission. I AM the administrator. The windows logon profile / user account is an Administrator level one. And I have gone into properties on the VW programme an ensured it has FULL CONTROL set for the selected user / admin / System / all users / everybody. And even launched VW in "Run as Administrator Mode". Nothing! - No change.

 

Yet I can save new VW files (or copies of old files) to the root directory of C:/Users. And open, amend and save no problem.

 

I tried creating a new Library ("VW-Test") and then adding all the folder structure containing the legacy files to the new library. No dice. Same problem.

 

I then created a group of nested folders and sub-folders (10 layers deep - the same as the legacy folder structure) with copies of some legacy vwx files in. And put this folder group in "Documents". Same problem. Won't open files at all, and won't save to the location - even with brand new folders and files. But if I cut and paste this group of test folders into "Downloads"  / "Music" or "Video", VW WILL then open and file-save-as in this folder structure no problem!

 

Strangely it won't do so in "Pictures". Leading me to think there's something odd going on with permissions affecting My Docs and My Pictures directories only, which is denying read/write with ONLY VectorWorks and no other programme. But oddly this does not manifest with the very same files in the same amount of sub-level nested folders in "My Downloads" / "My Music" or "My Video". I've checked the permissions on all the folder groups. They are all the same - "Full Control" for all relevant users.

 

There's just no rhyme or reason to this. I have just run out of ideas.

 

Thanks

 

Iso

 

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Yep that's a permissions issue on the filesystem. Unfortunately just checking the read/write settings on the files and folders isn't enough. I don't want to advise too much here, since the issue isn't Vectorworks specific (Vectorworks requires full read/write access so you don't always notice it with other apps that require less) and messing with permissions can be dangerous if you don't know exactly what you're doing, but you may want to research the OS-level "Take Ownership" commands for the various folders to get them back in line:

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753659(v=ws.11).aspx

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Thanks Jim. Yes it did turn out to be a permissions issue of sorts in the end.

 

I finally worked out what the gremlin was about 15 minutes ago. A new "RansomWare Protection" module of Bitdeferender had been activated on the PC a few weeks ago (VW has not been launched or used on that PC since).

 

Bitdefender was basically considering VectorWorks ransomware because it wasn't yet in the White-List. Annoyingly though, rather than doing a screen-pop an altering on trying to open or save a VW file - as it has done on other apps it didn't yet know (where the .exe file trying to execute the command is shown and the user can then choose to allow or deny) - Bitdefender did nothing in this instance, and instead VW popped up the "You don't have permissions to save in this location" windows error message.

 

Infuriating! - Took about 12 hrs of diagnostics to get to this point, which could have been 30 seconds with the correct screen prompt!

 

Maybe something to do with the fact our VW version is 2011 SP4. Perhaps Bitdefender 2016 needs to see a current developer digital signature in order to prompt correctly?

 

Anyway, problem solved, Thanks all for your ideas, And I post this here in case anyone else is befuddled by the same issue, so this can save them a couple of wasted work days!

 

Cheers

 

Iso

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